"Former Fat Kid" Opens Protein Bar in Chicago

"Former Fat Kid" Opens Protein Bar in Chicago

Food & Drink

"Former Fat Kid" Opens Protein Bar in Chicago

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By Cari Martens

Matt Matros says he spent the first 22 of his 29 years being ridiculed for being the ‘fat kid.’ In 2001, he took control of his life and adopted a lifestyle that featured a healthy diet of high-protein foods and regular exercise. He dropped 60 pounds.

Now he’s trying to take others in that healthy lifestyle direction with his new quick-service restaurant in downtown Chicago, called Protein Bar.

Right across the street from the Sears Tower, Protein Bar’s menu includes blended drinks, wholesome bowls, freshly-made soups, wraps and salads. All items, Matros says, are high in protein and fiber, but low in sugar.

As reported by Monica Rogers on the web site ChainLeader.com, Matros admits the main focus of Protein Bar’s menu is meal-replacement shakes. The QSR offers nine signature high-protein drinks such as the Michigan Ave-alanche, made with vanilla protein, choice of milk, yogurt, banana, granola and almonds.

Protein Bar’s point of difference, Matros says, is in what he puts in his shakes. Unlike other smoothie or juice bars, juice is not used. Rather, shakes are created using all-natural proteins, milks and fruits. Quoted in the article, Matros says ‘Smoothie bars largely rely on high-refined-sugar-content concentrates to make their drinks, which are loaded with empty calories and carbs. Our shakes are made with fresh fruit…no sugar,’ he says.

While protein shakes served at smoothie bars typically contain 6 or 7 grams of protein, Matros says Protein Bar’s shakes have at least 22 grams of protein per serving, which keeps a person feeling full for longer.

If all goes well, Matros hopes to expand and open additional units in Chicago and beyond.

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